Saskatchewan

Policing concerns in rural Saskatchewan prompt meeting of ministers

Saskatchewan's minister of justice says he went to the federal minister responsible for the RCMP over rural policing concerns.

'Public safety continues to be our challenge,' says Minister of Justice Gord Wyant

Concerns raised earlier this fall from people in rural Saskatchewan has prompted the province's justice minister to meet with Regina MP Ralph Goodale, who is responsible for the RCMP as minister of public safety. (CBC News)

Saskatchewan's minister of justice says he went to the federal minister responsible for the RCMP over rural policing concerns.

Gord Wyant said he and Minister of Public Safety Ralph Goodale agreed to have further meetings to discuss adequate RCMP deployment and resources allocated to this matter.

"Public safety continues to be our challenge," said Wyant, adding that comments and concerns from the public prompted the meeting with the Saskatchewan MP.

"We need to make sure that not only is the proper protection there, but people feel they are being protected," said Wyant.

He said Goodale is doing a review of vacancy management.

"I think that was a big concern that was expressed in rural Saskatchewan," said Wyant.

A spokesperson for Goodale said the MP is "committed to working together with his provincial colleagues to ensure public safety in Saskatchewan."

He went on to say the minister would not comment on operational matters.

Police services agreement

The RCMP has a service agreement to police the province.

The cost is split with the provincial government, which covers 70 per cent. The remainder comes from Ottawa.

Here's how the RCMP defines the agreement:

  • Police services agreements outline the duties and responsibilities of the RCMP in financial, operational and administrative areas within the provisions of the provincial and municipal policing services.

  • Provinces and municipalities establish the level of resources, budget and policing priorities in consultation with the RCMP.

  • The RCMP is responsible for delivering on the policing priorities within the established budget.

Integrity review

In August, the government launched an integrity review of the RCMP. It is being carried out by KPMG.

According to the federal government, the review aims "to assess whether the RCMP is adequately resourced to deliver on its mandate in a sustainable manner."

The review is wide-ranging, looking at all aspects of policing and operational activities.

It is expected to be complete this winter.

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